Dublin: The US won the Presidents Cup for the eighth time on Sunday, when Tiger Woods beat South African Richard Sterne in the concluding singles at Muirfield Village Golf Club.
With the Americans needing a total of 18 points to retain the trophy, Woods secured the decisive point by safely parring the final hole.
The world No. 1, despite visibly suffering from back pain over the closing holes, came from one down after eight holes to seal a one-up victory that gave the US an unassailable 18-14 lead with two singles matches still to finish. “It was a long week but it was worth it,” Woods said. “We did it.”
The US had needed only four points from the 12 singles encounters to keep the Cup, having established a lead of 14-8 earlier in the day after dominating the rain-delayed final foursomes session.
However, they had to work a lot harder than expected as the Internationals mounted a gutsy fightback, winning six of the first nine matches to finish.
Earlier, the Americans secured their first win of the afternoon when Hunter Mahan beat Japan's Hideki Matsuyama.
Australian Jason Day had won the first point in the singles, crushing Brandt Snedeker, but the Internationals still faced a daunting task, trailing 9-15 overall.
Amid sporadic rain showers, some of them heavy, and occasional sunshine, the US led in six of the remaining 10 matches, trailed in one and were all square in three.
No team had ever triumphed in the Presidents Cup after coming from behind going into the last-day singles.
PGA Championship winner Jason Dufner was three up on Zimbabwean Brendon de Jonge after 13 holes while Cup rookie Jordan Spieth was one up on Canada’s Graham DeLaet, after 14.
Zach Johnson was two up on South African Branden Grace after 12 holes and Matt Kuchar led Australian Marc Leishman by one after 11.
Webb Simpson was one up on South African Louis Oosthuizen after nine holes, and British Open champion Phil Mickelson led Argentina's Angel Cabrera by the same margin, also after nine.
In the morning, the only blue number on the leaderboard from a match still out on the course came from Masters champion Adam Scott of Australia, who was one up on Bill Haas after 13 holes. (Reuters)